Friday November 8 2019
Tommasi: 'Ritiros need scrapping'

Players’ chief Damiano Tommasi feels the time has come for clubs to scrap midseason retreats and saw nothing wrong with Antonio Conte’s comments.

Napoli were sent into ‘ritiro’ as punishment for their recent poor form but instead went against the wishes of President Aurelio De Laurentis, going straight home after their 1-1 draw with RB Salzburg on Tuesday.

That has left the club in a tense situation, but Tommasi disagreed the Partenopei acted unsportingly, instead calling for an end to punitive training camps. 

“I see a team who have trained and prepared themselves for their match against Genoa,” he said at a Press conference for the Gran Gala del Calcio 2019.

“In Italy we have this strange idea that sleeping with our teammates makes us play better.

“What happens instead is that serenity can be found far from one’s own city. Going to sleep in the same hotel is a thing of the past.

“Their professionalism isn’t up for discussion, given they’re training to prepare for the Genoa match. I don’t know if Napoli will start legal action, we don’t know.

“I don’t know what orders were given and what a mutiny means, but a footballer’s job is certainly to perform well as a footballer.

“They aren’t refusing to train. They’ll have all the time to prove their worth on the pitch.”

Conte appeared to undermine Nicolo Barella and Stefano Sensi when he said Inter had only signed players “from Cagliari and Sassuolo” after their 3-2 defeat to Borussia Dortmund.

“The rapport between a player and coach is so intimate and direct that there are always reasons for such comments,” argued the AIC President and former Roma midfielder.

“Conte knows best how to build rapports with his players. I’ve never come across a player who doesn’t respect him.”

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